LANHAM – As training camp comes to a close, the Washington Redskins are ready to kick off the 2017 football campaign against their I-95 rivals, the Baltimore Ravens, on Aug. 10.
Even though the Ravens are in a different conference (AFC) than the Redskins, the matches between the teams have been competitive since they faced each other for the first time in 1997.
Washington won its meeting on the road last season against the Ravens, 16-10, in a back-and-forth grudge match.
Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco attempted to lead a game-winning drive in the waning seconds of the fourth quarter. With only 20 seconds remaining on the Redskins 20-yard line, Flacco missed a fourth down throw intended for Mike Wallace, and then Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins ended the game with a kneel down. Cousins finished 29-of-40 for 260 yards with a touchdown and interception.
Despite dealing with a slew of injuries this offseason, the Redskins have proved to be a resilient group in camp, and that should translate to the field on Thursday.
So far, Keith Marshall (knee surgery), Jordan Reed (toe), DeAngelo Hall (knee), Jamison Crowder (hamstring) and Josh Doctson (hamstring) are sidelined. However, other than Marshall missing the rest of the season and Hall being questionable for week 1, the other injuries are considered day-to-day.
“He’s getting close,” Washington Redskins Head Coach Jay Gruden said about Jamison Crowder's injury status. “I saw him running yesterday out here on their day off, rehabbing, and he’s getting closer.”
As for Reed, the picture was not as clear.
“I don’t know, we’ll see,” Gruden said. “I think from every indication that I’ve gotten and received from the doctors and trainers and Jordan, I feel like he’ll be ready for the season. You never know, so we’ll still have to wait and see. Things are odd from time to time, but I have total faith that he’ll be ready.”
In other news, the Redskins staff has been impressed with former Oklahoma running back Samaje Perine since they drafted him 114th overall in the fourth round of the 2017 NFL Draft.
“I’m surprised at how good his hands are,” Gruden said. “He catches the ball well. I know they had Joe (Mixon) in their backfield at Oklahoma so they didn't throw him a lot of balls, probably neither would I.
“I think his hands and his ability to learn have been great. Just his work ethic, just him as a person, everything has impressed me about Samaje so far. I think he's a total pro. You know he comes in, he’s no nonsense, works hard, prepares well and is a very bright kid. He doesn't have any weaknesses in his game.”
Since the running back corps has been infected with the injury bug, Perine has had more reps to show off his ability. Time will tell what role or impact he will make on the squad, but so far he has created some competition for the other veterans who are vying for more playing time heading into the preseason.